Shares continued to advance on August 17 on the HCM City bourse, with the benchmark VN-Index rising to a two-month high of 433.45 points, up 0.61 percent over the previous session.

Blue chips extended gains, lifting the VN30 Index to 515.55 points. Nineteen of the top 30 shares climbed by market capitalisation and liquidity, six declined and five closed flat.

Trading improved with 38 million shares, worth 715 billion VND (34 million USD), changed hands, up 40 percent in volume and 50 percent in value.

Shares of PV Gas (GAS) were bought strongly in the morning session, following the news that the company was added to the MSCI Frontier Index, which represents 98 percent of the market capitalisation of 31 "frontier" markets. Vietnam is one of the four Asian countries with stocks included in the Index.

A total of 2.42 million GAS shares were traded on Aug 16, making it the most active share on the southern bourse. It edged up 3.7 percent to close at 41,600 VND (1.98 USD).

On the Hanoi Stock Exchange, the HNX-Index climbed more steadily in the afternoon, adding 0.59 percent to a close of 70.35 points, its first rise in three days. The HNX30 also increased 0.96 percent to stand at 134.68 points.

However, both market volume and value were down about 12 percent, totalling just 30 million shares, worth 281 billion VND (13.4 million USD).-VNA